When it comes to graphic design, I’ve got a fair bit of experience. Do I have any official training? No. But what I do have is Canva, and over 200 designs under my belt. 

Canva is a free graphic design tool that is especially great for educators because they can get Canva Pro for free (link below). The completely “free forever” version of Canva is more than enough to work with, but Canva Pro gives you access to over 100 million stock photos, videos, audio, and graphics. Extremely rare is the occasion when I haven’t been able to find something I’ve been looking for (and if I can’t, there are other resources available), and the quality and variety of their Pro media is impressive.

With an education account, teachers can even add students to an online classroom, giving them access to Pro content as well. Students can design flyers, brochures, presentations, logos, posters, newsletters, and more. There are 250,000 templates available for free, making it easy to design something impressive, even without prior experience. I’ve actually created most of my designs from scratch, though, and I don’t think they turned out half bad! 

Just a small sample of the things I’ve been able to create with Canva!

instructions for centerpiece brainstorm cooperative learning structure
graphic showing ways to stay safe from Covid-19
middle school voice levels classroom poster

Just a small sample of the things I’ve been able to create with Canva!

award certificate for students "being uncommonly good" aka the bug award
handout describing quick-write and sketch strategy for engaging with new learning outcomes
handout describing the key steps of direct instruction including statistics on the effectiveness of the strategy
table showing standardized test content required by grade

I’ve used Canva to create designs for signs, website buttons, tutorials, handouts for teachers and students, flyers for professional development, infographics, YouTube thumbnails, instructional guides, Spotify playlist covers, award certificates, and even favicons.

Canva Pro (again, free for educators!) also allows for downloads with a transparent background, and their “Magic Resize” feature can turn a postcard into a poster without messing up the design. It is so easy to use, and if you haven’t gathered from my enthusiasm, it’s pretty fun to use as well.

To get started, click the button below and head over to the Canva for Education website. Then, get ready to have a blast designing with your students (or just during your prep time)!